Dublin protest in solidarity with 21 year old Belfast woman charged for using abortion pills - 15 Jan 6pm, the GPO


A 21 year old women in Co Down has been charged with 'using a poison to procure her own abortion', that is using the Mifepristone and Misoprostol pills which are legal across most of the EU but illegal in Ireland, north and south. Under the 1861 act in the north she faces life in prison if convicted, in the south under the legislation recently introduced by the Labour Party and Fine Gael she would face 14 years in prison.

As the use of these pills represents the only safe way to obtain an abortion south of the border its estimated that hundreds if not thousands break this law every year in order to avoid being forced through an unwanted pregnancy. The pills should be taken under medical supervision but doctors who provided such supervision would face the same jail sentences so instead they are sourced via online services like Women Help Women and Women on Web.

North and south of the border several people have publicly declared they have either taken the pills or supplied them to others. In July this year some 215 signatories of a letter saying they had done this turned up at police stations in the north but none were charged.

The Abortion Rights Campaign has called a rally for this Friday at 6pm at the GPO in Dublin to stand "in solidarity with Alliance for Choice and the 21 year old woman facing prosecution in the North of Ireland."

ARC say "We condemn the arrest and prosecution of a 21 year old woman in County Down who has been accused of using poison to procure abortion. Both Mifepristone and Misoprostol are on the World Health Organization’s list of essential drugs; these drugs are not poison. These are the same drugs used for medical abortions in the rest of the UK. If this woman lived in England instead of Northern Ireland she would have been prescribed this medication on the NHS. Mifepristone and Misoprostol are also routinely used for miscarriage management. We are organizing a solidarity protest at the GPO at 6pm this coming Friday to coincide with the protest in Belfast by Alliance for Choice."